James Naismith

Photo of James Naismith
James Naismith, M.A., M.D., D.D, (November 6, 1861 November 28, 1939) was the Canadian inventor of the sport of basketball and the first to introduce the use of a helmet in American football. He was also the first basketball coach assembling a team of 5 players.

He was born in Almonte, Ontario, Canada, the eldest son of Scottish immigrants who had arrived in the area in 1851 and worked in the mining industry.